As one of the cities hit hardest by the 2008 recession, Detroit has been steadily inching its way back to the surface with the help of its annual casino revenue, ranked fourth in the U.S. in 2012 by the American Gaming Association. Of course, having the MGM Grand Detroit on your side also helps. The 400-room hotel was given a four-star nod of approval this year by Forbes Travel Guide. Just a 20-minute drive from the Detroit Metro Airport, the svelte property was the only Detroit establishment acknowledged on Forbes’ listing of the top four- and five-star hotels, restaurants and spas worldwide.
Speaking on the growing popularity of gaming hotels, Lisa Williams, MGM Grand Detroit’s executive director of sales remarked, “With the increased pressures on meeting planners and event organizers to attract, retain and engage attendees, coupled with the responsibility to ‘do more with less,’ planners are seeking out venues that allow them to provide an impressive presentation and maximize their budget.”
Among the hotel’s booty of spoils is a 100,000-sf casino—including a non-smoking poker room—and 30,000 sf of functional event space. The largest meeting space is the 14,000-sf Grand Ballroom, divisible into four smaller salons. Amber, Garnet and Sapphire meeting rooms add an additional 1,600-sf each. Five lounges and three restaurants are also available for around-the-clock brainstorming sessions. At the sport’s pub TAP, groups can experience more than 50 draught and bottled beers such as Michigan craft beer favorites and popular domestic and imported brews.
The hotel’s 20,000-sf resort-style IMMERSE Spa is the only full-service spa in Michigan, offering a magnitude of signature spa rituals for bringing the mind, body and spirit back into balance. The Sento spa ritual is one of the more holistic treatments—a calming mimosa wash begins the ritual followed by a massage with warming ginger oil and crushed bamboo sap. The treatment ends in a rejuvenating 20 minute shiatsu massage with kinmoxei silk oil that contains essences of begamot and citrus.
In effort to be more sustainable, the hotel rolled out a new LED retrofit to its 64-acre parking garage. The project will reduce the garage’s annual energy use by 80 percent. The refresh is one of many energy conservation projects underway in MGM’s Green Advantage program. Aside from the obvious environmental perks, William says the project reflects rising customer demand for more environmentally conscious meetings, conventions and travel.